Putting on your Big Girl Panties

opinion 1
Hello, I am a nanny in Oregon and have been a nanny for a little over seven years. My first family was a former teacher of mine and I watched her two children for 6-7/hr. This was almost 8 years ago when I started. Fast forward to now where I have watched children full time for two families and am now more of a career nanny. I do a lot of on-call/weekend work for numerous families in the area. I am now making between 11-15/hr for all new families. All of the families I work for now have no problem paying this wage and I am actually right on the lower end of the pay scale in my area.

My question is I have been contacted by my former family for some date night/weekend work. How do I tell them that I now charge almost twice as much as they paid me seven years ago? This is a very awkward conversation for me. I always had a hard time standing up to them as their nanny when I worked for them full time (they were often late coming home, I started out working two days a week and all of a sudden was sometimes working 40 hours a week). I love your site and would love any suggestions that your readers have! Thanks so much!


Laura said...

This is a tricky situation, but just cut straight to the point and tell them your new rates. You don't need to tell them why. If they want your services, they'll pay what you deserve for them.

Good luck!

Lyn said...

Man, what i would give to pay for gas now what i did 8 years ago! The price of everything goes up over time hon. Just give them back a call, text or email and let them know that you would "love to babysit for them on occcasion! My current rate is $13 hourly (insert your rate. Quote slightly higher if you think they may try to talk you down). Looking forward to seeing you all soon!"

Susannah said...

I have a nice little form email for situations like this.

Just remember you're an adult now and an experienced nanny at that, and you are no longer her student.

Good luck!

No Thanks said...

The fact that they had little to no respect for you in the past raises some red flags for me. I would tell them you are no longer available to help them if I were you.

Phoenix said...

well I think that you should tell that since the last time they hired you, you have changed your rates to accomidate cost of living increases as well as adjusting your rates to suit your more professional and experienced self. You just need to be honest with them and they should pay you what you are asking especially if its going to be only a few nights a month. Just make sure you keep it professional. this is your job

NannyK said...

This is completely besides the point, but can I ask you where in Oregon you live? I'm I'm Portland, and it would be great to network with some other Nannies in the area!

Wendi said...

I would let them know ASAP that you now charge a higher hourly rate for your services. State cost of living increases, more experience, your reason.

If they want you still and are willing to pay you what you now charge, great. If not, they can find a teen-ager in their neighborhood.

Good Luck to you OP!~

missmarymack said...

I highly doubt these people are expecting to pay you what you made 8 years ago. That's just plain crazy.
I don't think you should stress at all. Just send a polite email saying "Great, I'd love to see your family again! I charge $x for 1 kid, $x for 2, etc" as if it's no big deal. I'm sure they expect your rates to have risen!

N is for Nanny said...

I agree with Lyn and missmarymack - state you'd love to babysit for them again and that your current rate is $x/hr. I wouldn't get into why your rate has increased since you last worked for them, as it isn't really any of their business and that may lead them to believe that your rate is up for discussion. Additionally, if they give your name to any of their friends, this will also allow them to give their friends your current rate information.

big girl panties said...

Hello All!
I am the person that asked for help, I so appreciate all your comments. I emailed them that I would love to help and let them know my rates.
THis family is what made me make sure I have had contracts with all my current families and I am going to really stick to my guns this time!
I always have such a hard time with them because I had such a special relationship with that family.
NANNY K, I actually am in the Portland area as well!

alex said...

Just let them know. It will probably be easier than you think because they have to know that everything has gone up since then and that is below minimum wage now.

MissMannah said...

I agree with the others that you don't really need to tell them why you've raised your rates. I'm sure they could figure it out for themselves and if they respect you as a professional, they would expect a rate increase.

I'm just wondering, what is the normal rate for Portland? My husband and I have been seriously considering moving there, but it probably won't be for a couple of years. What is the nanny market like up there?

duh.. said...

Easy. Sure. My rate is X at a minimum commitment of y hours per sitting.

NannyK said...

Op-Wow, thats great! You should email me, and perhaps we could meet up for coffee sometime!


Village said...

I agree with No Thanks. If they treated you badly the first time around, why go back for more? I'd tell them I charge $20 a hour now, and watch them walk away. It doesn't sound like you need the work.

Just My Two Cents Just Now said...

I agree with Village. If they weren't so nice to you before, what makes you think they will be to you now?? Huge red flag. Move on.

Best of luck to you OP. ♀

Alicia B said...

Portland area here as well- Letting them know was a good idea. It gives them, even if they don't want YOUR services, a reasonable rate for the area.

I charge anywhere from minimum wage up, depending on amount of children, location of the job, amount of hours, and activities to be done by me (outings, any household tasks, etc.).

Generally, $11-13 per hour. The family I sit for on Saturdays currently and on occasion for a date night pay $12. They live about 15 miles from me, and have one little boy that's about fourteen months.

I agree with not mentioning the reasons 'why' your rate went up. It's been 8 years, if they didn't assume the rate went up, I'd say they weren't worth the business. Especially not for 6-7 an hour. That's barely enough to make it worth your trip alone.